‘We’re Moving Away from Fixed Infrastructure’: DISA CIO on Cloud Computing

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DISA CIO Henry Sienkiewicz

The Defense Information Systems Agency has made widespread gains in cloud computing — achieving nearly 100 percent virtualization, according to recent report in Government Computer News.

DISA Chief Information Officer Henry Sienkiewicz sat down with GCN to discuss the shifting landscape of federal IT, cloud computing and some of the agency’s top-notch cloud offerings.

On the issue of the tech evolution, Sienkiewicz said, for his agency, the end goal is increased mobility.

“When we talk about the rapidly changing pace of technology, we’re moving away from fixed infrastructure and looking very clearly at how we support mobility and the whole complexity of operations,” he explained.

It’s no secret that DISA would like to have a larger role in federal cloud efforts. In an interview earlier this month, the agency’s Chief Technology Officer Dave Mihelcic said DISA was “uniquely positioned” to be the Defense Department’s first-choice cloud provider, in part, because of its enhanced security controls.

Sienkiewicz said DISA’s strategy for increasing cybersecurity is to reduce the “attack plane,” which he described as the surface vulnerability of a system.

“Now the problem with some of that is figuring out this private, public hybrid cloud model as we keep trying to go forward,” he added.

Part of DISA’s challenge for developing cloud solutions is first figuring out what the agency’s constituents need. Even so, the agency has not delayed in developing its own cloud environment, the Rapid Access Computing Environment and a software-as-a-service offering, Forge.mil.

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